Turning Simplot Avocado Pits Into Better Bioplastics
July 8, 2019
Like most operators, you probably offer plastic utensils for takeout orders and other occasions. Now multiply that by millions of restaurants. Taken together, it adds up to an enormous landfilling of single-use, petroleum-based plastic products that decompose slowly—or not at all.
With Simplot’s help, that’s changing.
What’s wrong with bioplastics?
A Mexican company called Biofase is revolutionizing the bioplastics industry with 100% biodegradable/compostable plastic products made in part from avocado pits recaptured from Simplot’s Mexican avocado and guacamole production.
While the technology for making plastic using crops like corn has been available since the 1950s, bioplastics have historically cost at least 40% more than petroleum-based plastics, reducing their popularity.
Also, by using crops like corn, the bioplastics industry was cutting into the supply of food for humans and livestock.
Just add avocado
In 2012, Biofase succeeded in creating a unique new polymer—the building blocks of plastic—using a compound isolated from avocado pits. Biofase is now making the new biopolymer into 100% biodegradable/compostable products like plastic knives, forks and spoons, as well as resins that can be added to petroleum-based plastics to make them more biodegradable.
Better sustainability all around
This is a win-win for consumers, bioplastics makers and the Mexican avocado industry, which generates 300,000 tons of avocado pits annually.
- More food for people: Instead of using food crops to make bioplastic, Biofase can make them from a “waste” product—enough to replace 15-20% of the feedstock used in global bioplastic production.
- Cheaper than regular plastic: Biofase’s new biopolymer is even less expensive to produce than regular plastic, removing a huge barrier to adoption by global businesses and consumers.
- Less waste at Simplot: The company’s Irapuato and Morelia avocado processing plants have already provided more than 450,000 pounds of pits for bioplastic utensil production.
Look for more bioplastic products in the future
With a sizeable, steady supply of avocado pits from processors like Simplot, Biofase is looking at new uses for its biopolymer like product packaging and plastic grocery bags. For more information on how where you can get Biofase compostable utensils for your operation, visit https://www.biofase.com.mx/.